Thursday, February 12, 2009

Nothin' but negativity

First, let me apologize for not fulfilling my promise of posting the Atlantic Region rankings and the top 8 teams' upcoming schedules yesterday. I forgot that on Wednesday evening my family and I would be driving to-and-from Slippery Rock for the game. I considered asking my wife to drive and tend to our 3-year-old daughter while I typed on my laptop, but I figured she would give me the same answer a Slippery Rock football player would give to the question, "Do you know where the library is?"

Now that was mean. But who couldn't be in a foul mood after the game last night? Not only did the Knights fall to the Rock, 82-72, but even if they had won, the game had an air of negativity to it. Examples:
  • Instead of rooting for their team, the SRU football players/jeerleaders razzed against Gannon the whole night -- repeatedly commanding coach Reilly to sit down, chanting "Kyyyyyle, Kyyyyyle, Kyyyyle", and, worst of all, grabbing a Gannon player's shorts during a sideline inbounds play.
  • When the officials (finally) attempted to take control of those unruly fans, SRU coach Kevin Reynolds walked over to the kids, said a few words, and then shook their freaking hands. The jeerleaders then roared even louder. A couple jumped out of the stands and onto the floor. That'll teach 'em!
  • Gannon fans spent most of the night barking at the referees. A fan in front of me (who is a regular reader of this website, thank you) alternated his complaints between "Get in the game, ref!" and "Boo! Boo! Boo!" My daughter even chimed in once with a "Boo!" It was contagious.
  • I'm fine with a certain level of trash talking, but chest bumping your opponent and pushing your forehead into his face is way over the line. But that's what SRU's Kyle Camper did repeatedly to George Johnson, once right in front of the Rock bench. If I was coach Reynolds, I would have yanked Camper out of the game for unsportsmanlike conduct. But I'm predicting that being the disciplinarian that he is, Reynolds instead shook Camper's hand.

A longtime faithful Gannon fan who I talked with this morning said it best. After Gannon fell to East Stroudsburg earlier this season, you were disappointed that your team lost but you had to hand it to the Warriors for an honest effort. After this loss, you felt nothing but bitterness. Personally, I'm hoping Slippery Rock's football team goes 0-11 next year.


  1. Jim, I could not agree with you more. SRU all-around showed no class whatsoever. I don't know if you read my comment I left yesterday after the game, but there were many instances of this lack-of-sportsmanship showed throughout the night.

    Anyone know what was the reasoning behind calling Reilly "Wally"? At first we thought they were just simply saying, "Sit down Reilly"... then we listened closer and it sounded like "Sit Down Baldy", so we thought maybe they were chanting at Coach Viscuso. But then a parent of one of the Gannon players who was sitting in front of us (had just returned from the bathroom) said they were saying "Sit Down Wally".

    Also, total sidenote... I just wanted to say that you have a beautiful family Jim. You're wife is very pretty and you're daughter is adorable. Her eyes just lit up when you had her walking down by the court at halftime. You're an awesome writer (or if you want to say blogger haha), but I also got to see you as the awesome family man, which is so important in the world nowadays. (I had never met you personally, but just noticed that last night...)

  2. Well, we can all go to the 'Boro and stand in the front row and grab their shorts this Saturday afternoon. Personally, I'd bet the house on EU this Saturday in a bit letdown for Slimy Pebble.

    While we're railin' on the fans, the cheer of "Over-rated" puzzles me. Either it means "you're so overrated for losing to a team like us." Or it means that our team's a bunch of underachievers for beating you. I've never figured it out.

    The officials made a mistake by having the coach go to the students section. There is supposed to be a person in charge (like the athletic director) who is supposed to deal with the situation. When GU has had problems with fans, Elwell dealt with the situation, not Champan / Dukiet.

    As for the team's future possiblities, let's not get overly upset about yesterday. GU will be heavily favored in their three remaining home games. A lot can still happen, but winning the final three road games will give them a 9-2 record on the road. A GU fan and I were talking today and the only other sesaon that we can recall with two road losses is ... well ... last year. Even the team that won the region in 1987, 1988, and 1990 lost more road games in the regular season. It's close, but GU has the most favorable schedule among the leaders in the West.

  3. A trend that we hope doesn't keep happening. In the four PSAC home games involving the Erie County schools, the road team is 4-0. Hopefully that trend will stop this Wednesday.

  4. I agree with you, Golden, that the coach should not have been the one to "deal" with the fans. Although with the way he shook hands and came away smiling and laughing, he should've been given a technical foul. He was a joke. But the 3'6 security guard they put over there wasn't the answer either. If Kyle can stay healthy, I can see them winning out. Clarion, Boro, IUP, and Hurst will all be very tough... but I really think they can pul it off (plus Lindsey is due for a couple big games now after his past few performances).

    Golden, I'm with you... let's stop the trend on Wednesday... but let's start a new trend Saturday... the first of a 6 game winning streak :) (I think they have 6 games left)

  5. This just shows how much class Gannon players and fans have. Best fans in DII. LET'S GO GANNON.


    "G-G-A-A-N-N-O-N, GO GANNON!" :)

  7. 4Ever: Thanks for the kind words about my family. It's quite obvious that I married up.

    Golden: I agree with you about the "Overrated" chant. They might as well chant "We're not that good" or "We got lucky."

  8. Jim: I don't think you "married up" at all, I think you're family is very beautiful all-around! I hope you didn't take my comment that way... My main goal was just to point out how much of a family-man you appear to be, which (I am very big on "family" with the way things are now a days) I thought was very nice to see.

    About the overrated... I agree. Just chant "How'd you lose to us?"

  9. 4Ever: I've known Jim for 20 years. He's a professional self-effacer. So no worries about your comment about his family coming across the wrong way! :) His family, including him, *is* quite good-looking. ;)